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Westlake Legal Group > fox-news/travel/general/national-parks

Tourists filmed getting dangerously close to a black bear in Tennessee

Back away from the bear!

A group of curious tourists were recently caught on camera getting dangerously close to a black bear in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in Tennessee. Video footage of the surprising scene has since gone viral on Facebook, with many commenters describing the visitors as “idiots” for getting so close to a wild animal, a violation of a federal regulation punishable by fines and arrest.

On Oct. 14, Kelly Price Helms shared an “insane” 33-second clip to Facebook, featuring a group of people photographing a black bear from just a few feet away, while the wild animal ate grass near the side of a road between Cades Cove and Townsend, as per WBIR. The visitors seemed to be blissfully unaware of the dangerous situation they were in.

ALASKA’S ‘FAT BEAR WEEK’ CONTEST ENDS, NEW WINNER ANNOUNCED

“Witnessed this the other day while visiting the Smoky Mountains. Insane!” Helms captioned the now-viral video, which has since been shared nearly 5,000 times to date.

“Please note that my family and I were safe in our car and unable to move along due to these people jumping out of their vehicles,” she added.

Social media commenters were quick to declare the tourists “idiots” and “fools” for the reckless behavior.

“Good grief! People are crazy. This is a wild animal. Yes, they are beautiful and I love to see them but I’m not crazy enough to get that close,” one user wrote. “The sad thing is when people get attacked the bear is the one that suffers the consequences if they find it.”

“It only takes one time for that bear to come after you … There is a sign at the beginning going into the Smokies that tells you how far to stay away from the bears,” another agreed.

Westlake Legal Group black-bear-1280 Tourists filmed getting dangerously close to a black bear in Tennessee Janine Puhak fox-news/travel/general/national-parks fox-news/lifestyle fox news fnc/great-outdoors fnc article 8e98af03-3017-5e59-9944-72f346e91300

The National Park Service (NPS) warns that “bears are wild animals that are dangerous and unpredictable. Do not approach bears or allow them to approach you!”  (Getty Images)

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“People are stupid. Stay in your car and leave the bear alone,” another said.

More broadly, Helms said that she shared the footage in hopes of raising awareness on the importance of respecting wildlife and natural habitats.

“I just want people to be informed about the danger of being that close to wildlife. It could not only turn bad for the tourist but for the bear as well,” the woman told WVLT.

Though a spokesperson for the National Park Service (NPS) was not immediately available to offer further comment on the incident, the agency’s website warns that “bears are wild animals that are dangerous and unpredictable. Do not approach bears or allow them to approach you!”

Westlake Legal Group wewqewe34234dfdf Tourists filmed getting dangerously close to a black bear in Tennessee Janine Puhak fox-news/travel/general/national-parks fox-news/lifestyle fox news fnc/great-outdoors fnc article 8e98af03-3017-5e59-9944-72f346e91300

An image of the sunrise in Great Smoky Mountains National Park in Tennessee. (iStock)

It is also illegal to willfully approach bears within 150 feet (50 yards) or any distance that disturbs or displaces the creature in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, the NPS explains. Violation of this federal policy can result in fines and even arrest.

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Biologists estimate that roughly 1,500 bears live in Great Smoky Mountains National Park, which is one of the “largest protected areas in the eastern U.S. where black bears can live in wild, natural surroundings,” the agency states.

Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6095054384001_6095052068001-vs Tourists filmed getting dangerously close to a black bear in Tennessee Janine Puhak fox-news/travel/general/national-parks fox-news/lifestyle fox news fnc/great-outdoors fnc article 8e98af03-3017-5e59-9944-72f346e91300   Westlake Legal Group 694940094001_6095054384001_6095052068001-vs Tourists filmed getting dangerously close to a black bear in Tennessee Janine Puhak fox-news/travel/general/national-parks fox-news/lifestyle fox news fnc/great-outdoors fnc article 8e98af03-3017-5e59-9944-72f346e91300

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Tourist falls near Old Faithful Geyser, suffers severe thermal burns

Westlake Legal Group ofinnporch Tourist falls near Old Faithful Geyser, suffers severe thermal burns fox-news/us/us-regions/west/wyoming fox-news/travel/general/national-parks fox news fnc/us fnc Edmund DeMarche article 18ce2f39-2db5-5602-92c4-d6e6002831d9

A tourist visiting Yellowstone National Park on Sunday suffered severe thermal burns after he tripped into a hot spring near Old Faithful Geyser, according to local reports.

Cade Edmond Siemers, 48,  a U.S. citizen who lives in India, told rangers he was walking without a flashlight at the time of the fall, the Jackson Hole News & Guide reported. He managed to get back to his hotel room and was eventually flown to the burn center at an Idaho hospital. He was listed in critical condition.

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Park rangers said they detected “evidence” of alcohol use back in the hotel room.

Yellowstone was established as the world’s first national park back in 1872, according to NPS.gov.

The park has about 500 geysers. Park rangers are able to predict the eruption of six of them, including Old Faithful that has only lengthened the time between eruptions by about 30 minutes in the last 30 years. Four million people travel there each year.

The hospital told the Idaho Statesman that Siemers was in intensive care.

In 2016, Colin Nathaniel Scott, 23, of Portland, Ore., left the boardwalk section near the geyser and fell into a high-temperature, acidic spring. Recovery efforts were called off after rangers determined there were no remains left in the hot spring.

The death occurred in one of the hottest and most volatile areas of Yellowstone, where boiling water flows just beneath a thin rock crust.

Water temperatures there can reach 199 degrees, the boiling point for water at the park’s high elevation.

At least 22 people are known to have died from hot spring-related injuries in and around Yellowstone since 1890, park officials said.

The Associated Press contributed to this report

Westlake Legal Group ofinnporch Tourist falls near Old Faithful Geyser, suffers severe thermal burns fox-news/us/us-regions/west/wyoming fox-news/travel/general/national-parks fox news fnc/us fnc Edmund DeMarche article 18ce2f39-2db5-5602-92c4-d6e6002831d9   Westlake Legal Group ofinnporch Tourist falls near Old Faithful Geyser, suffers severe thermal burns fox-news/us/us-regions/west/wyoming fox-news/travel/general/national-parks fox news fnc/us fnc Edmund DeMarche article 18ce2f39-2db5-5602-92c4-d6e6002831d9

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Washington Monument elevator briefly breaks down after years of elevator renovations

Days after it reopened to the public, the elevator inside the Washington Monument temporarily broke down on Saturday, park officials said.

The monument — the tallest building in Washington, D.C. — opened on Thursday after a three-year renovation in which its elevator and security systems were upgraded.

WASHINGTON MONUMENT WILL REOPEN TO PUBLIC ON THURSDAY AFTER THREE YEARS OF RENOVATIONS

On Saturday, however, “The elevator was down for about an hour, but came back online,” the National Park Service (NPS) wrote on Twitter. “No evacuation via the stairs was necessary.”

“We apologize to our visitors who were inconvenienced. Normal operations have resumed and tours are running on schedule.”

Mike Litterst, a spokesperson for NPS, said staffers resolved the issue after about an hour and visitors who were at the top of the 555-foot monument were able to get back downstairs using the elevator.

51-STAR AMERICAN FLAGS LINE PENNSYLVANIA AVENUE AS WASHINGTON, D.C., SEEKS STATEHOOD

Before it reopened this week, the Washington Monument had been closed for most of the past eight years. An August 2011 earthquake left cracks in the stones near the top of the obelisk. It reopened in 2014, but Park Service officials were forced to close it again two years later after a series of elevator malfunctions.

Westlake Legal Group AP19261602797704 Washington Monument elevator briefly breaks down after years of elevator renovations Nicole Darrah fox-news/travel/vacation-destinations/washington-dc fox-news/travel/general/national-parks fox news fnc/us fnc e18fc175-2958-574d-863d-f1f2de937981 article

The newly renovated elevator inside the Washington Monument briefly broke down on Saturday, park officials said. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

Construction on the monument began in 1848 and took nearly 40 years to complete. The private organization that was running the project ran out of funding and construction was halted in 1854 at around 150 feet; that delay was exacerbated by the Civil War.

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Construction resumed in 1879, but builders were forced to use stone from a different quarry — giving the obelisk its distinctive two-tone color. At the time of its completion, it was the tallest building in the world, but was soon overtaken by the Eiffel Tower in 1889.

Fox News’ Frank Miles and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Westlake Legal Group AP19261602788160 Washington Monument elevator briefly breaks down after years of elevator renovations Nicole Darrah fox-news/travel/vacation-destinations/washington-dc fox-news/travel/general/national-parks fox news fnc/us fnc e18fc175-2958-574d-863d-f1f2de937981 article   Westlake Legal Group AP19261602788160 Washington Monument elevator briefly breaks down after years of elevator renovations Nicole Darrah fox-news/travel/vacation-destinations/washington-dc fox-news/travel/general/national-parks fox news fnc/us fnc e18fc175-2958-574d-863d-f1f2de937981 article

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Arizona hiker falls to her death while climbing Yosemite National Park’s Half Dome

An Arizona woman plunged to her death Thursday while ascending the iconic granite cliffs of Half Dome in California‘s Yosemite National Park, officials said.

The victim was identified as Danielle Burnett, 29, of Lake Havasu City, park rangers said.

In a statement, park officials said Burnett “fell over 500 feet down steep, rocky terrain, and was deceased when Park Rangers arrived on the scene,” according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

YOSEMITE RANGERS RECOVER BODIES OF 2 WHO FELL FROM OVERLOOK

Westlake Legal Group Yosemite-half-dome-iStock Arizona hiker falls to her death while climbing Yosemite National Park's Half Dome Robert Gearty fox-news/us/us-regions/west/california fox-news/travel/general/national-parks fox news fnc/us fnc e00f8501-2a2a-5f86-984b-1ddb44a94c09 article

Half Dome in Yosemite National Park. (iStock)

She was scaling the steepest part of the trail when she fell, a Yosemite spokesman said.

Half Dome rises more than 8,800 feet above Yosemite Valley. Park visitors hope to be drawn in a daily lottery as one of 300 people who are permitted to try the 14-mile trek to the top, the Visalia Times Delta reported.

‘WATERMELON SNOW’ FOUND IN YOSEMITE NATIONAL PARK AT HIGH ELEVATION

Cables are installed each summer to assist hikers making the climb up the signature rock face attraction.

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Yosemite was investigating the incident.

Westlake Legal Group Yosemite-half-dome-iStock Arizona hiker falls to her death while climbing Yosemite National Park's Half Dome Robert Gearty fox-news/us/us-regions/west/california fox-news/travel/general/national-parks fox news fnc/us fnc e00f8501-2a2a-5f86-984b-1ddb44a94c09 article   Westlake Legal Group Yosemite-half-dome-iStock Arizona hiker falls to her death while climbing Yosemite National Park's Half Dome Robert Gearty fox-news/us/us-regions/west/california fox-news/travel/general/national-parks fox news fnc/us fnc e00f8501-2a2a-5f86-984b-1ddb44a94c09 article

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Video captures Yellowstone bison ramming rental car during stampede

Westlake Legal Group yellow Video captures Yellowstone bison ramming rental car during stampede Gary Gastelu fox-news/travel/general/national-parks fox-news/science/wild-nature fox-news/auto/attributes/safety fox news fnc/auto fnc article 32650bb7-a25b-57e7-958b-2dcb38258b83

“I can’t believe we didn’t take the insurance.”

That was Bruce Delle Chiaie’s reaction after filming the moment a bison crashed into his rental car as a herd of the 2,000-pound animals ran through traffic in Yellowstone National Park.

Dozens of North America’s largest land mammal can be seen filtering through stopped vehicles during a stampede that Chiaie believed was caused by the beeping noise made by a reversing car.

CHARGING BISON FLINGS 9-YEAR-OLD GIRL IN THE AIR AT YELLOWSTONE

Chiaie, who was traveling with his wife and three children, said the car’s window was smashed and the hood crushed. His wife can be heard saying, “Ooh, look at the big one in front of us,” just before the moment of impact.

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No injuries were reported.

The Associated Press contributed to this report

Westlake Legal Group yellow Video captures Yellowstone bison ramming rental car during stampede Gary Gastelu fox-news/travel/general/national-parks fox-news/science/wild-nature fox-news/auto/attributes/safety fox news fnc/auto fnc article 32650bb7-a25b-57e7-958b-2dcb38258b83   Westlake Legal Group yellow Video captures Yellowstone bison ramming rental car during stampede Gary Gastelu fox-news/travel/general/national-parks fox-news/science/wild-nature fox-news/auto/attributes/safety fox news fnc/auto fnc article 32650bb7-a25b-57e7-958b-2dcb38258b83

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Utah girl, 14, dies during family vacation at Glacier National Park

Westlake Legal Group Logan_GNP_091616-cr Utah girl, 14, dies during family vacation at Glacier National Park New York Post fox-news/us/us-regions/west/montana fox-news/travel/general/national-parks fnc/us fnc article 20f42727-776f-5c67-9a96-e2840a094218

A 14-year-old girl vacationing with her family at Glacier National Park in Montana was killed Monday when rocks came tumbling down on their moving vehicle.

The family, from Utah, were riding on Going-to-the-Sun Road when a number of rocks rained down from the mountain and onto their vehicle at about 7 p.m., according to a Glacier National Park release.

The rocks, ranging from “fist-sized” to “12-inches in diameter,” landed on the roof and shattered the rear windshield, the release said.

The teen’s parents and two other children in the vehicle were also injured in the incident.

Paramedics attempted to take the girl to a hospital, but she died on the way there.

‘WATERMELON SNOW’ REPORTED AT THIS NATIONAL PARK  

Her parents, who suffered serious bruises, and the two other children were hospitalized.

Officials are withholding the victim’s name pending proper family notification.

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In 1996, another person was killed by a rockfall on the same road, the release said.

Westlake Legal Group Logan_GNP_091616-cr Utah girl, 14, dies during family vacation at Glacier National Park New York Post fox-news/us/us-regions/west/montana fox-news/travel/general/national-parks fnc/us fnc article 20f42727-776f-5c67-9a96-e2840a094218   Westlake Legal Group Logan_GNP_091616-cr Utah girl, 14, dies during family vacation at Glacier National Park New York Post fox-news/us/us-regions/west/montana fox-news/travel/general/national-parks fnc/us fnc article 20f42727-776f-5c67-9a96-e2840a094218

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VIDEO: Guitarist plays ‘Star-Spangled Banner’ while overlooking Grand Canyon

Talk about letting freedom ring.

A proud American guitarist originally from Atlanta recently posted on Instagram his performance of “The Star-Spangled Banner,” which was filmed while he overlooked Grand Canyon National Park.

Andrew Suggs decided to make the patriotic video while on a camping trip in northern Arizona, FOX 10 of Phoenix reported. He told the station the video was made on the Fourth of July.

BOY PRAISED FOR TYING SHOE OF HONOR GUARD MEMBER DURING TEXAS FOURTH OF JULY PARADE

“Happy 4th! Please share!,” Suggs writes in the post.

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Westlake Legal Group 7d512962-grand-canyon VIDEO: Guitarist plays 'Star-Spangled Banner' while overlooking Grand Canyon fox-news/us/us-regions/southwest/arizona fox-news/us/personal-freedoms/proud-american fox-news/travel/general/national-parks fox-news/tech/companies/instagram fox-news/great-outdoors/camping fox-news/entertainment/music fox news fnc/us fnc Dom Calicchio article 6b09884c-0e95-5b8c-aa66-e6a9abcd59ba

Grand Canyon National Park. (Shutterstock)

Suggs is seen wearing the cap and jersey of his favorite baseball team, the Atlanta Braves, whom he claims have invited him to play the anthem at their home ballpark before a future game, according to FOX 10.

Westlake Legal Group 7d512962-grand-canyon VIDEO: Guitarist plays 'Star-Spangled Banner' while overlooking Grand Canyon fox-news/us/us-regions/southwest/arizona fox-news/us/personal-freedoms/proud-american fox-news/travel/general/national-parks fox-news/tech/companies/instagram fox-news/great-outdoors/camping fox-news/entertainment/music fox news fnc/us fnc Dom Calicchio article 6b09884c-0e95-5b8c-aa66-e6a9abcd59ba   Westlake Legal Group 7d512962-grand-canyon VIDEO: Guitarist plays 'Star-Spangled Banner' while overlooking Grand Canyon fox-news/us/us-regions/southwest/arizona fox-news/us/personal-freedoms/proud-american fox-news/travel/general/national-parks fox-news/tech/companies/instagram fox-news/great-outdoors/camping fox-news/entertainment/music fox news fnc/us fnc Dom Calicchio article 6b09884c-0e95-5b8c-aa66-e6a9abcd59ba

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Woman captures stunning engagement photo at Yosemite, now we have to find the couple

Westlake Legal Group yose-main Woman captures stunning engagement photo at Yosemite, now we have to find the couple fox-news/travel/general/national-parks fox-news/tech/topics/viral fox news fnc/us fnc article 78dcfde5-e319-5e3b-90c2-febd7a67a290

An Ohio woman who was visiting Yosemite National Park last month appealed to social media to help her track down a couple about to get engaged on a rock formation while a ray of white sunlight danced across their shoulders.

Faith Taylor, the woman who took the photo, told KCRA that she didn’t want to walk over to the couple because she didn’t want to interrupt the moment. There already appeared to be a professional photographer there.

“At Yosemite, a couple was getting engagement photos taken and when I went to take a pic of their glory, a beam of LIGHT shown on them,” she posted on Twitter. “I. Am. Emotional. Someone find them.”

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She posted that there was a false alarm on Sunday that didn’t pan out.

Westlake Legal Group yose-main Woman captures stunning engagement photo at Yosemite, now we have to find the couple fox-news/travel/general/national-parks fox-news/tech/topics/viral fox news fnc/us fnc article 78dcfde5-e319-5e3b-90c2-febd7a67a290   Westlake Legal Group yose-main Woman captures stunning engagement photo at Yosemite, now we have to find the couple fox-news/travel/general/national-parks fox-news/tech/topics/viral fox news fnc/us fnc article 78dcfde5-e319-5e3b-90c2-febd7a67a290

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Montana hunters who illegally killed Yellowstone mountain lion left trail of photos on social media

Three hunters in Montana who illegally killed a mountain lion in Yellowstone National Park last year were caught after authorities followed a trail of pictures the trio posted on social media, according to court documents.

Austin Peterson, 20, Trey Juhnke, 20, and Corbin Simmons, 19, were sentenced last month to a 3-year worldwide hunting ban after other hunters alerted game wardens to photos of the illegal kill that had been shared to Instagram, Snapchat and Facebook, according to investigation documents obtained by the Jackson Hole News & Guide.

MONTANA MEN WHO KILLED MOUNTAIN LION AT YELLOWSTONE SENTENCED TO 3-YEAR WORLDWIDE HUNTING BAN

“You know, we ended up getting a lot of this information from a guy in Bozeman off of Facebook because you guys put a bunch of stuff on social media,” Yellowstone special agent Jake Olson told Simmons during an interview, per the documents.

Westlake Legal Group Yellowpark-Mtn-Lion-1 Montana hunters who illegally killed Yellowstone mountain lion left trail of photos on social media Stephen Sorace fox-news/us/us-regions/west/montana fox-news/travel/general/national-parks fox-news/great-outdoors/hunting fox news fnc/great-outdoors fnc article 0953c91c-7297-52a5-b00d-cf763c87a3bb

A trail of photos on social media depicting the illegal kill of a mountain led authorities to convict three hunters from Montana. (United States Department of the Interior)

Each of the men had previously admitted to shooting the mountain lion in a clearly marked area of the park on Dec. 12, 2018, before taking it back to their vehicle across the border. The documents claimed they later changed their story when authorities interviewed them separately.

HUNTER WHOSE GIRAFFE PHOTO WENT VIRAL SAYS SHE’S ‘ABSOLUTELY’ STILL HUNTING: ‘I AM PROUD OF THAT GIRAFFE’

The three men contradicted details in each other’s accounts, including when they saw boundary posts, the color of Peterson’s GPS screen when it supposedly malfunctioned and who shot at the lion, the News & Guide reported.

Authorities learned that all three men had fired at the mature male lion, which was shot eight times, and killed it after it crossed the border into Yellowstone, according to the documents.

Westlake Legal Group Yellowpark-Mtn-Lion-2 Montana hunters who illegally killed Yellowstone mountain lion left trail of photos on social media Stephen Sorace fox-news/us/us-regions/west/montana fox-news/travel/general/national-parks fox-news/great-outdoors/hunting fox news fnc/great-outdoors fnc article 0953c91c-7297-52a5-b00d-cf763c87a3bb

The three men gave conflicting stories when authorities interviewed them separately. (United States Department of the Interior)

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The men’s actions were found to be in violation of the Lacey Act of 1894, per the National Park Service (NPS), which prohibits the taking, selling or purchasing of wildlife from protected areas.

Peterson, Junke and Simmons all pleaded guilty and were ordered to pay $1,666 each in restitution, along with three-year unsupervised probations, which included the worldwide hunting ban, according to the documents.

Fox News’ Michael Bartiromo contributed to this report.

Westlake Legal Group Yellowpark-Mtn-Lion-1 Montana hunters who illegally killed Yellowstone mountain lion left trail of photos on social media Stephen Sorace fox-news/us/us-regions/west/montana fox-news/travel/general/national-parks fox-news/great-outdoors/hunting fox news fnc/great-outdoors fnc article 0953c91c-7297-52a5-b00d-cf763c87a3bb   Westlake Legal Group Yellowpark-Mtn-Lion-1 Montana hunters who illegally killed Yellowstone mountain lion left trail of photos on social media Stephen Sorace fox-news/us/us-regions/west/montana fox-news/travel/general/national-parks fox-news/great-outdoors/hunting fox news fnc/great-outdoors fnc article 0953c91c-7297-52a5-b00d-cf763c87a3bb

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Man falls from cliff into Kilauea volcano’s caldera, officials say

A man visiting Hawaii’s Kīlauea volcano this week was left “seriously injured” after falling from a cliff into the volcano’s caldera, officials said Wednesday.

Responders from the Hawai‘i County Fire Department and Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park rangers were ultimately able to rescue the unidentified individual, who witnesses said had “lost his footing and fell from a 300 foot cliff at Kīlauea caldera” around 6:30 p.m., according to a news release from Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.

“The man had just climbed over a permanent metal railing at the Steaming Bluff overlook to get closer to the cliff edge,” park officials said.

GRAND CANYON VISITOR, 70, DIES IN FALL FROM EDGE, AUTHORITIES SAY

A search for the fallen man ensued and resulted in his rescue more than two hours later, according to the news release. He was found “on a narrow ledge about 70 feet down from the cliff edge,” officials said. He was airlifted to receive medical treatment.

Westlake Legal Group K%C4%ABlauea-caldera-Getty-2015 Man falls from cliff into Kilauea volcano's caldera, officials say fox-news/us/us-regions/west/hawaii fox-news/travel/general/national-parks fox news fnc/us fnc Elizabeth Zwirz cda795ba-5fb2-5665-89a4-8402e74700de article

The man was airlifted to Hilo Medical Center for treatment, the news release said. (Getty/File)

Officials issued a stern warning about the hazards of bypassing safety barriers, saying the results could be fatal.

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“Visitors should never cross safety barriers, especially around dangerous and destabilized cliff edges,” Chief Ranger John Broward said. “Crossing safety barriers and entering closed areas can result in serious injuries and death.”

The United States Geological Survey defines a caldera on their website as “a large basin-shaped volcanic depression” that is “commonly formed when magma is withdrawn or erupted from a shallow underground magma reservoir.”

Westlake Legal Group Kīlauea-caldera-Getty-2015 Man falls from cliff into Kilauea volcano's caldera, officials say fox-news/us/us-regions/west/hawaii fox-news/travel/general/national-parks fox news fnc/us fnc Elizabeth Zwirz cda795ba-5fb2-5665-89a4-8402e74700de article   Westlake Legal Group Kīlauea-caldera-Getty-2015 Man falls from cliff into Kilauea volcano's caldera, officials say fox-news/us/us-regions/west/hawaii fox-news/travel/general/national-parks fox news fnc/us fnc Elizabeth Zwirz cda795ba-5fb2-5665-89a4-8402e74700de article

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